We all know the adage, “The pen is mightier than the sword.” While this saying alludes to the power of the written word over the literal power and durability of a steel blade, I definitely wouldn’t mind possessing a writing instrument that could draft poetry as well as survive an earthquake. In my search for such a writing utensil, I came across the Tuff Writer Operator and Mini Click Pens.
Let’s start with the guts of the Tuff Writer Operator (Shown in Blue) 6061-T6 Aerospace Grade Aluminum houses the Fisher SPR4 Pen. The 6061-T6 metal is extremely corrosion resistant, as well as very hard. This a great metal that performs will in areas where rust can be a hindrance. The exterior also employs a proprietary non marking/non reflective finish as well as being anodized for further durability. We see a cold pressed spring steel clip fastened by 2 hex bolts. The cap unscrews from the tip and pressure snaps onto the back for writing. The pen weighs 1.6 ounces and measures 6 inches.
The Mini Click is composed of brass, the model reviewed features a highly polished finish. We enjoy the same cold pressed steel clip. The Mini Click is you guessed it, a clicky pen. The cam mechanism is a Tuff Writer designed exclusive. The Mini Click measures in at 5.13 inches and weighs a robust 2.5 ounces. A Fisher SPR4 cartridge is housed as well.
Since both of these pens utilize an after market ink cartridge, I won’t focus too much on the actual ink. Although I will say we enjoy all the benefits of a pressurized Fisher cartridge including writing underwater, upside down in 400 degree temperatures. If, although you find yourself in those conditions with a pen, I suggest you stop reading this at once and consult a life coach.
As for the pens in hand, well I find both have their strengths. The Operator’s light weight is really nice, especially considering it’s built like a tank – although the constant need to unscrew the cap makes it better suited for a desk pen in my situation. Both of these pens are built tough, not just for durability in the field but for last ditch self defense applications, I’ll leave it to the reader’s imagination though. The knurling provides decent grip without discomfort.
The tension on the mini clip is great, a very secure clip even on thin fabrics. The upward flare on the end means you can usually clip it one handed depending on the rigidity of the material. I’m digging the O Ring grips but am worried about their overall lifespan and replacements. This pen feels good in the hand, a very substantial feel. I’ve been using it to collect signatures at work and it almost never fails to solicit a, “Wow, nice pen!” remark.
The thing I enjoy most about these pens, is they’re a different sort of breed. They’re sleek without being gaudy and stylish without pretension. While forms follows function, these pens still retain a quality aesthetic. Tuff Writer offers both of these models in a wide array of finishes too, so finding one that suits your personal style shouldn’t be difficult.
I had a good time working with these pens. Tuff Writer did a great job transmuting the concept of a pen as merely a writing device into an essential tool. The machining is flawless as much as I can tell and the price points are fair. Again I stress you consider your end use as the screw cap on the Operator can be a hindrance if you’re using the pen constantly in the field or require one hand operation. All said, if you’re in the market for a non disposable writing instrument that might just outlast you, I’d consider a Tuff Writer.